VCU Dance presents MEANS WITHIN, the Spring 2018 Senior Project Concert, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, April 19-21, 2018 at 8:00 pm at the Grace Street Theater, 934 West Grace Street in Richmond. Tickets are $15/$10 for students with a valid VCU I.D. and can be reserved by calling the Grace Street Theater box office at (804)-828-2020, or via

After seven semesters of developing and refining their skills as artists who teach, perform, and create, the spring 2018 seniors will be presenting original works. Each piece explores the ways in which we contend with the constructs, challenges, and conditions of the outside world.

Demarcation, choreographed by Alyssa Baker and performed by six dancers, is inspired by Baker’s experiences in college of overcoming battles within herself. Her work will showcase the struggle of confronting issues within one’s self while continuing to exist and find a release in order to operate in a larger world.

Marsell Chavarria’s Right here…right…now consists of a sound art gallery, a sound art fantasy, exploring the portrayal of a deeply traveled journey into the heart of the universe. Marsell welcomes you Here … and NOW.

Breach of Faith, choreographed by Chanel Dews, explores the many personal challenges she has encountered. Her dancers will demonstrate emotional exhaustion, frustration and distress while exemplifying how to overcome deceit.

In Interrogate the SpectrumKelsey Gagnon explores their personal gender identity journey and the influences of society’s gender constructs. This work questions the male/female binary and examines the gender spectrum from a new perspective, finding the fluidity between masculinity and femininity.

In Can You Hear Me? Imani Highsmith invites people into her world of hearing impairment. The dance evokes both the physical sensations of what she hears on a daily basis, and the ups and downs of someone who is hearing-impaired. With music by Robbie Kinter, eight dancers will embody the inner ear and the chaos, stress, and confusion that one who is partially deaf, may experience.

Ca’Lynn Scruggs VOICES elevates mental health awareness. Represented by seven dancers, the work sheds light on disorders that are primarily thought to be severe, by giving voice to the sufferers whose voices are usually silenced. From those affected by low levels of depression and anxiety to bipolar and schizophrenia disorders, this population craves acceptance and understanding.

Jordan Shortnacy’s Shift is based on the idea of volcanic energy. Volcanoes have the capacity to suddenly explode or slowly erupt. Shortnacy will be exploring the many levels of a volcano, allowing her dancers to absorb and reflect its energy.

Christine Wyatt’s work ti’ed (as in tired, but you’re too tired to pronounce the r sound), is a movement exploration of exhaustion and an investigation of the human spirit. Her choreographic intention is to expose the social, political, emotional, and psychological sources and effects of tiredness while seeking and exploring remedies for it. The work is inspired by the life and testimony of Fannie Lou Hamer, a civil rights activist and movement leader, and community organizer who originated the iconic phrase “I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired.” This work draws parallels between past and present, embodying a truth that comes from a personal revelation: that what’s happening right now is tied to our collective history in this country.

Funding for Means Within was provided in part by generous individual donations to a student Kickstarter campaign.

Means Within is the seventh event of the VCU Dance 2017-2018 Season. The presenting program of VCU Dance is committed to building and engaging dance audiences in the University and Richmond community while providing opportunities for artists to present and create work.

Funding for the 2017-2018 season is graciously provided in part by the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation. Recognized by professional dancers and choreographers as “a place where things are happening,” Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Dance and Choreography offers a vibrant and stimulating atmosphere where students prepare for careers in dance.